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Millrock Resources (TSX-V: MRO)(OTC: MLRKF) CEO Greg Beischer on Acquiring the Nikolai Nickel-Copper-Chromium-Cobalt-Platinum Group Element Project, Delta Mining District, Alaska
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the president and CEO of Millrock Resources, Mr. Greg Beischer. Greg, it is great to have you back on, how have you been?
Greg Beischer: Great. I'm doing well Gerardo. It’s great to start interfacing with other geologists again, and we're looking forward to a good run here coming in 2022.
Gerardo Del Real: Let's talk about how you're going to get on that good run. You've definitely set the table well. You just announced a project, a nickel-copper-chromium-cobalt-platinum group element project in Alaska that I believe is going to be an exciting, exciting story in 2022. You've staked and have an agreement to option the project. The part of the news that caught my eye was the 15 kilometer long strike length, and historical intersections up to 319.7 meters wide. That to me screams you could likely put a resource around this and understand what you have in relative short order. Am I wrong in that assumption?
Greg Beischer: No, that's exactly why I staked it. It's funny how things come up around, but I first landed in Alaska in 1995, you recall it. I spent the first half of my career working with Inco, a big nickel producer now part of Vale, but certainly nickel was the main commodity of interest. We had targeted this particular area of Alaska. Honestly, when we drilled the initial holes in the mid ‘90s, we were sorely disappointed because all we got was this smoke. It was hundreds of meters of low grade nickel with some platinum group elements and copper. It didn't fit the bill at the time, but a lot of drilling got done after Inco left the project and turns out there's quite a few historic drill intersections that are hundreds of meters thick. Low grade, but things are different now, Gerardo, and I've seen other projects around north America where nickel deposits of this grade are actually looking economically feasible to develop.
The thing is they can be huge. The amount of contained metal within them can be absolutely enormous. As the demand for nickel and other battery metals increases, the prices keep going up and makes it more feasible to operate these low grade, but huge tonnage deposits. Honestly, I've spent a lot of my career looking for nickel and I'll tell you it's not easy at all globally to find high grade massive sulfide nickel deposits. I think this is the future. These lower grade deposits are what's going to be the source of nickel in the coming decades, as we use more and more of that metal.
Gerardo Del Real: How is the access and the infrastructure surrounding the project?. Having spent 17 years in Alaska, obviously there are projects that are very, very easily accessible and frankly, there's others that are not. Where does this one fall?
Greg Beischer: Yeah, this one's by Alaska standards in a very, very good spot. We've got paved highways that come very close. In fact, there's two blocks that form the project, the Canwell block, where actually we have some exceptional grades of nickel and platinum group elements. We can drive right up to that one and then there's a network with trails all over it.
The Eureka zone where we have what appears to be a very large, low grade deposit. We can get quite close to it on roads. We'd probably have to do a helicopter work to begin with, but certainly there are trails that come within just a few kilometers of the known zone. Pretty darn good. The main railway and power line is just over a hundred kilometers to the west, totally reasonable infrastructure.
Gerardo Del Real: What comes next for this project? And then I want to talk about your partner, Felix Gold, which recently commenced trading on the Australia Securities Exchange. And that's obviously another positive development for Millrock shareholders.
Greg Beischer: We're going to follow our model for now. We're going out and getting the drilling permits, that's part of our business model is to create drill ready projects. Typically we would find an earn-in partner that would come in and earn an interest in the project. This one for me is really tempting to hold on to, Gerardo. We know the metal’s there and with a relatively modest drilling program, we think we can convert those historic intersections into solid actual bona fide 43-101 compliant resource, which as you know, once you've established that resource, that can really drive the share price. It's pretty tempting to do that. On the other hand, we're keeping all our options up and we could spin this project out into another company of its own. It certainly is a project that would warrant that kind of attention. We're going to move it all forward in the next couple months and see what happens.
Gerardo Del Real: Excellent. Let's talk, Felix Gold, your partner there just raised I believe in excess of over 10 million Australian dollars. And a lot of it is going into exploration of projects that Millrock, in the past has done exactly what you're doing with this new project that you just staked and optioned, which was get it drill ready, develop it, and then partner it out. How are things on that front?
Greg Beischer: Yep. This project, I think is just a great example of what Millrock has done over the years, Gerardo. We sold the two projects that we held in Fairbanks, three projects actually into Felix Gold. A 100% interest in return for shares in Felix Gold. We received those shares, there's almost 10 million of them and the IPO price of 25 cents, that’s 2.5 million Australian dollars, or maybe 1.9 million US dollars worth of stock. We're coming into a great gold market here, I think. And I think the team that Felix has built will be successful and that those shares are going to become worth a lot more. We can monetize those shares at some point a couple of years from now. And on top of that, we've got paying royalties coming from those projects.
These are great deals for they were relatively small investment for Millrock. They could pay off big and therefore reward our shareholders in turn. But Felix has raised over $10 million, it's going into the Treasure Creek project, it's going into the Liberty Bell project, which we sold into Felix. I'm really excited to see what they come up with. They're going to start drilling, I believe as early as March, that's their stated plan. We'll be really glad to see the results coming from those projects.
Gerardo Del Real: You're going to have multiple partner funded exploration programs in 2022. I have to ask about the 64North Gold project. I know it's been a bit disappointing to not make a discovery early in the process, but we also know that exploration takes some time and some of the best discoveries are made years into drilling. How are things progressing on the 64North Gold Project which I still believe hosts a ton of potential.
Greg Beischer: Yeah, I'm a big believer too, Gerardo. Actually just earlier this morning, we had a conference call amongst our geologists about it and pretty darn excited. Some of the trench results have started to roll in and we've got a model put together. We think we've figured out where the deposit is. Resolution appears is going to continue to earn-in. We're going to raise more money and looks like they're going to mount another drill program later this summer. When you're that close to an existing mine and ore body and you've got all these great indicators you can't ever give up. Doesn't look like Resolution is going to and we're there to help them in there to cheer them on.
Gerardo Del Real: Sounds like a busy 2022. I know that the combination of tax-loss selling and frankly, you setting the table for this very busy 2022 has led to the share price pulling back. The market really liked the news today on this new project. And it sounds like you're going to have quite a bit of news flow. Millrock, I think is again, something that people should take a peek at if they want exposure to some quality exploration work. Anything to add to that, Greg?
Greg Beischer: Yeah, no, I'd agree. That is kind of how it worked out. We didn't end up doing a lot of drilling last year. It ended up being a year setting the stage for this year, where we're going to make up for it. I can see drilling happening almost for certain on five Millrock projects, maybe six, seven or eight if all really comes through. And so that's a lot of catalysts that can drive our share price upwards. We're only now at 6 cents. I think it's a real bargain and has all kinds of potential to increase substantially in the near future.
Gerardo Del Real: Greg. We’ll talk soon. Thank you so much for your time. Thanks for the update.
Greg Beischer: All best Gerardo. Thank you.
Gerardo Del Real: All Right.Click here to see more from Alaska Energy Metals